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Living with diabetes: uncovering the realities

Just about everyone has heard of diabetes, and with over 3.5 million people in the UK diagnosed with the condition and many others who don’t yet realise they have diabetes, most of us know someone who is affected by it.

Nevertheless, it is a hugely misunderstood condition, and there are many myths and misconceptions about what it is really like living with diabetes.

Busting these misconceptions is the theme of this year’s Diabetes Awareness Week, which starts on 12 June with a focus on “setting the record straight”, and NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is supporting this campaign.

Dr Caroline Bennett, Clinical Lead for Diabetes at the CCG explains:

“Diabetes is caused when the pancreas doesn’t produce any, or enough, insulin to help glucose enter the body’s cells, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly. This means that the amount of glucose in the blood is too high because the body cannot use it properly.

There are two main types of diabetes: type one usually affects children or young adults whereas type two is associated with being overweight and often affects people over the age of 40.”

The CCG’s Information Bus will be travelling around the county throughout the awareness week, with health professionals on-board to answer queries and share helpful information.

There will also be an opportunity for people with diabetes to tell staff from the CCG what they think about current services.

Dr Bennett added:

“There are over 300,000 patients in Gloucestershire with diabetes and this looks likely to increase, due to growing obesity levels.

Diabetes is a very serious long term condition which affects the quality of people’s lives, so it is really important that patients understand the condition. They can do this by talking to their GP about an appropriate exercise plan, eating healthily, staying hydrated and checking their blood sugar levels.

With the right guidance and information, people can potentially avoid one form of diabetes and patients can learn to manage their condition effectively themselves.

This ultimately helps to reduce the number of serious complications associated with diabetes that people might suffer from.”

Why not visit the bus to find out more about the condition and services offered to patients in Gloucestershire and give your views on services? It will be at the following locations between 9.30am to 3.30pm.

Wednesday 15 June Dursley town centre
Thursday 16 June The Cross (town centre), Gloucester
Friday 17 June Outside M&S, Cheltenham
Monday 20 June Clock Tower Roundabout, Coleford

 

Further information:

www.diabetes.org.uk

 

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